chapter  5
12 Pages

Common Misperceptions

The problem with child sexual abuse is that much of what actually happens is explained away, minimized, blamed on the victim, viewed as an accidental occurrence caused by the alleged offender's stress, lack of access to a suitable partner, a poor marriage or unresponsive spouse, or the result of drug or alcohol abuse. The behavior may otherwise be accepted as a poorly executed loving gesture, or a misunderstood attempt at "sex education." Often the abusive behavior is explained as "looking after the child's hygiene," or attributed to "looking after a medical matter."